Network Security: First, Middle and Last

Server swipes card on POS station at bar.

We had the fun privilege this week of doing a security check for a restaurant.

We have agreements with banks, credit card processors and more to analyze a network for security issues or make changes to a client’s network because of a new point of sale system to be installed or modifications to existing ones.

The Restaurant’s Network

It was a simple restaurant, 5 workstations, a router and on-screen credit card swiping.

The meeting was to discuss security, and how to implement it in a manner that doesn’t impact the business. I arrived early with the credit processor and sat down.

Gaining Entry to the Network

Within a minute I had on a Samsung Tablet, logged into his wireless, logged into his router, cataloged his entire network, logged into the music system and started playing “The Pinacolada Song” through the overhead speakers.

With the next two minutes, I logged into the into the point of sale computer, copied the outstanding credit card batches report, locked all the workstations, and had the HP printer print out the lyrics to “I’m a little teapot.”

By the time the manager sat down, the network was in our total control with the ambiance now the melodic sounds of Rupert Holmes which were heard throughout the restaurant.

Complete Takeover: Under 5 Minutes

Total time, 4 minutes. Complete network take over without any advanced tools.

As I explained this in front of his credit processor, I could see the blood leave the face of the manager. And to show I truly did have control, I changed the music to “The girl from Ipanema.”

You could hear their collective jaws drop as they hit the table.

What You Need for Network Security

Over the next hour, we talked about securing the network using Sophos Firewalls, Ubiquiti Wireless Access, and a Cisco switch to VLAN everything together. Proposal accepted in FULL.  

Security is no joke, and it should be the first thing you consider when designing a network. It’s not a burden when it protects what you have, your clients data and can keep your business working especially when the banks can giveth and taketh away your credit card processing ability. Contact us today if you’re interested in knowing how secure your business network is.